Here are answers to key questions surrounding the Rise of the Resistance boarding pass system.
It is key to understand the Rise of the Resistance boarding pass system if you hope to experience the ride that has fans and critics mystified. After having success twice on my recent trip to Disney World, I’ve compiled answers to important Frequently Asked Questions to help you plan your strategy to secure a boarding group.
What are boarding passes?
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Boarding passes are a sort-of e-ticket that grants you the ability to ride Rise of the Resistance. They are secured through the Disney World/Disneyland app (you can manage your FastPass selections and reservations in this app as well). You will log into the app with your My Disney Experience information, which syncs your plans and Family/Friends list.
Does a boarding pass guarantee riding Rise of the Resistance?
Yes, but also no. There are two kinds of boarding groups: initial and backup. Initial groups guarantee a ride and vary in amount on a day-by-day basis. When I went, the initial groups were up to 109, meaning if you had a boarding group from 1-109, you were guaranteed a ride on Rise.
Backup boarding groups are distributed after initial groups run out and do not guarantee a ride on Rise. So if initial groups go up to 109, and you have boarding group 110 or above (they can go as high as 200+ some days), you are not guaranteed to ride Rise of the Resistance. However, that doesn’t mean you’re out of luck: If the ride runs smoothly during the day and avoids breakdowns/maintenance, you could have a decent chance of your backup boarding group being called.
So, how do I get a Rise of the Resistance boarding pass?
Getting a boarding pass requires a sequence of events to happen before park opening, so I’ll break down what you’re likely to go through the morning that you plan to head to Galaxy’s Edge:
- Wake up wherever you’re staying. Get ready.
- Leave wherever you’re staying and secure transport (Disney buses, Lyft/Uber, walking, etc.). Arrive at the park.
- Pick a line of security to go through. There are “no bag” lines for visitors without bags and these zoom by in comparison to bag lines. Security is very thorough if you do have a bag.
- After getting through security, you’ll head to the scan-in stations. Here you tap in your MagicBand or ticket and your fingerprint: this is super important. You must be scanned into the park in order to get a boarding pass. Furthermore, your entire group — that means everyone that plans on riding Rise — must be scanned in. You cannot, I repeat, you cannot send one person to secure multiple boarding passes. Everyone who you plan on riding the ride with must be in the park and scanned in, no way around it.
- After you’ve scanned in, you can join the mass of people moving towards different areas of the park, or you can find a spot to sit while you wait for park opening.
- An announcement will play over the speakers about Rise of the Resistance boarding groups. This is your cue to get your app ready.
- As soon as it’s park opening time, open up the Disney World/Disneyland app. From there, locate the Rise of the Resistance section right when you open the app. Click “Find Out More”, then “Join Boarding Group”, select the people from your Family/Friends list that are riding with you, and that’s it. You’ll (hopefully) be given a boarding group number and can go about your day.
What time should I arrive at the park?
You can take two approaches:
Arrive at the park an hour or so in advance. This would place you near the front of the line for when security opens. Then, when you get through security, you’ll likely be one of the first people in line at the scan-in station, meaning you’ll be among the first people let into the park before official opening.
This strategy is for those that want to head on Smuggler’s Run, Slinky Dog Dash or another headliner ride right away, because since you’re getting there at park opening, the walk-on line will be slim. This strategy doesn’t work as well if you scan into the park right at opening, because a line of people will already be formed at those rides since they scanned into the park 30+ minutes before you.
Arrive at the park 15-30 minutes before park opening. This strategy makes you miss the crazy early morning rush and gives you lighter security lines to get through. It also allows you some extra time to sleep or get ready if you need it.
This is the strategy I would recommend. There’s no need to sit in line an hour+ before park opening. You can likely find short standby lines for headliners near park closing time as people clear out and head back to their hotels, which means there’s less incentive to get up incredibly early.
On one day that I went for a boarding pass, I actually arrived about 8 minutes before park opening because of some transportation snags. We got through security and scanned into the park at 7:02 when the park opened at 7, but we were still able to get a guaranteed boarding pass for that day — we might’ve gotten lucky, but that also shows you do not need to get there crazy early just to get a boarding pass.
Are there different strategies for getting a boarding group through the app?
Yes. There are two main strategies that have had success:
Open the app at park opening time. If the park opens at 8 a.m., for example, as soon as your phone clocks goes from 7:59 to 8, open that dang app. Locate the Rise of the Resistance section and click “Find Out More”, then “Join Boarding Group”, select the people from your Family/Friends list that are riding with you, and that’s it.
Open the app a few minutes before park opening time and refresh. This strategy opts for clicking on the “Find Out More” button before park opening. Since it’s before boarding groups are open, you won’t be able to select “Join Boarding Group.” Instead, you click on “My Status” located to the left. This brings you to a page that will say you don’t have a boarding group, but that’s okay since no one will if it’s before park opening.
You’ll stay on this “My Status” page and drag down to refresh it. When it’s one minute before park opening, keep refreshing this page. When park opening hits, you should have the option to “Join a Boarding Group” within the “My Status” page. Click it, then select your Family/Friends that are riding with you, and that’s it.
I’ve heard success and failure stories for both strategies, although Option 1 seems like the most accepted way to strive for a boarding group. From personal experience, I can say that I used Option 1 both times I rode Rise, getting boarding groups 95 and 23. I had no issues going this route.
What do I do while waiting for my boarding group to be called?
One plus of the boarding group system is that once you get one, you can then go about your day. You can head back to your hotel or even park hop to a different park once you have a boarding pass.
One drawback of the boarding group system is you never know when your group will be called, so your day will likely revolve around Rise. It all depends on how well the ride holds up and if boarding groups get slowed down by maintenance or not.
What happens when my boarding group is called?
You will get a notification from the park app telling you that your group has been called; you can also check your progress on the “My Status” page. Once you get that notification, you have two hours from that time to use your boarding pass. So if you’ve got a 30-minute bus ride before you can make it to the park, that’s totally fine. Just keep an eye on the given return time and make sure to be back within two hours of that notification.
Can I just wait in a standby line for Rise instead of grabbing a boarding pass early in the morning?
Nope. There is no standby line available for Rise. FastPasses will maybe, probably be available in the future, but not right now. Your only chance to ride Rise is to have a boarding pass.
What happens if the ride breaks down and I can’t ride it?
This has unfortunately happened to some riders since opening. If some part of the ride breaks down while you’re on it, you will be exited off the ride and given FastPasses to come back later when the ride is working again, or for the next day.
I had this happen on my second time on the ride. After the first phase, we were ushered out exit doors and advised to watch the app for when boarding groups were being called again. We came back about an hour later and rode the ride with no problems — and with the FastPass, we also got to skip the queue line and head right to the start of the ride.
This sounds like a lot of trouble. Is Rise of the Resistance really worth it?
1000%. Yes. Absolutely. I had to choke back tears both times after riding it. A non-Star Wars fan will enjoy it just as much as a diehard fan will. It’s not just a ride, but an experience.
Have you been able to get a Rise of the Resistance boarding pass? Let me know in the comments.